Is My Kitty Overweight?

Just like human, animals do gain weight and grow overweight as well. What if you suspect your dear kitty at home is showing signs of obesity but you aren't too sure about it? You are also wondering what will happen to your kitty if it is overweight and how to help it reduce the weight? This is totally unlike human where we can control our weight by going on a healthier diet and do the workouts or exercises.

So, lets first look at how we determine if our dear kitty is overweight.

In general, most cats should be around 7-12 lbs but ideally the weight is still depends on the size of the individual cat’s frame. In this case, we are looking at the overall body condition score of our kitty. A cat body condition scale ranges from 1 to 9, with 1 indicating a cat is severely underweight, to 9 meaning severely obese. A cat is considered to have an ideal body condition if they score between 4 and 5. The score helps to determine the amount of fats over a cat's ribcage. You can bring your kitty to your local vet clinic for a better assessment on the score.

Run your hands across your kitty's back. Your kitty is consider overweight if you can't easily feel bones below a layer of fat. Also look at your kitty from above. If you can't see its waist, or the space between the ribs and hips protrudes, that's a sign that your kitty is overweight. 

Is there any risk/health problem for an overweight/obese cat?

Obese cats are at a greater risk for many diseases like diabetes, liver disease, arthritis, urinary problems, lameness, pancreatitis and GI diseases of all types, and skin problems. Overweight cats also experience a decrease in their quality of life and chances of getting cancer is much higher.
Cats that stays indoor majority of their time and remain inactive are more prone to be overweight, just like human when we live a very mundane and inactive lifestyle with very little exercises. With the global pandemic where everyone is working from home most of the time compared to in the past, it accelerate the problem even further. The cat foods or diets that are high in carbohydrates is also one of the factors contributing to overweight/obesity in cats.
Now, how should I slim down my dear kitty if it is overweight/obese? :)
As a loving cat owner, you need to take note of the total calories that your dear kitty is getting. According to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention., for A 10 lbs. cats that stay indoor most of the time they should take in about 200 calories a day.
Here are some of the tips:
  •  Always fill up the water bowl to make sure your kitty is taking in more fluids than the food itself.
  • Intentionally leave out food on a certain period of time.
  • Do not give human food to avoid the food being to oily that can also cause health issue such as diarrhea.
  • No dog food allowed for your dear kitty (they are meant for DOGS ONLY) :)
  • get your veterinarian to plan a suitable diet and the exercises based on your kitty's current condition.

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